One of the quickest energy and money-saving tasks you can do is caulk, seal and weather-strip all seams, cracks, and openings to the outside. Up to 25% of air is lost through small cracks and holes! To identify air leaks, check around your walls, ceilings, windows, doors, lighting and plumbing fixtures, switches and electrical outlets. Look for gaps, improperly applied caulk and weather-stripping, and doors and windows that don’t close tightly.
After you identify all air leaks, do the following:
- Weather-strip doors and windows.
- Caulk and seal air leaks where plumbing, ducting, or electrical wiring comes through walls, floors, ceilings, and soffits over cabinets.
- Install foam gaskets behind outlet and switch plates on walls.
- Use foam sealant on larger gaps around window trims, baseboards, and other places where air may leak out.
- Wood-burning fireplaces and wood-burning stoves usually have a damper installed. The damper is designed to be shut when the fireplace is not in use and can be easily opened when it is. It's common to forget to close the damper after a fire goes out. This essentially leaves a big hole through which heated or cooled air can escape the house. Be sure to close the damper when not in use to help maintain the temperature in your home.